The Storr brothers and WW1

Contributed by Helen Page

PEOPLE often ask about the origin of Storrs Road at Peachester, as there is no longer a local family of that name. As we approach Anzac Day, it is timely to remember the Storrs and tell some of their story. Like many other families of the time, they made a major contribution to the Great War.

In the early 1900s, John and Elizabeth Storr and their family moved from Laidley to a farm at Bribie View (part of present-day Donnybrook), near Beerburrum.

Three of the Storr brothers served with the A.I.F. during WWI. Harold enlisted in November 1914, a week after he turned 21; Arthur and Allan enlisted together in September 1915. All three brothers served in France, Harold surviving Gallipoli, and Arthur also spending time in the Middle East. Cards and letters sent by the brothers to family and friends have been preserved, and reveal that – like most Australian diggers – they enjoyed the adventure of seeing the world. But it wasn’t all fun.

Harold was with the 10th Battalion at Gallipoli, and sent a graphic description of the landing and its aftermath in a letter published in the Queensland Times on 10 July 1915. He describes how he was wounded, finishing on a positive note:

“I shall never forget the night I put in, I could not move my leg and it was terribly cold lying on the ground, with just an overcoat over me. The Turks are using a lot of bullets that explode when they hit, and it was one of those that got me … It is not serious, but jolly uncomfortable. I think I shall be back fighting before you get this.” Sadly, Arthur was killed in action at Lagnicourt, France, on 26 March 1917. He is one of thousands of servicemen with no known grave, but his name is recorded at the Villers-Bretonneux Australian Memorial. Imagine how hard it must have been for families like the Storrs, waiting for news of their sons and brothers on the other side of the world.  And then to hear the worst, knowing that two more brothers were still at risk, and the conflict a long way from resolution. After the war Harold and Allan returned to Donnybrook, and in the early 1930s purchased a farm at Peachester, at the end of what is now Storrs Road.

The Storr brothers have long since passed away, but their name stays with us. Next time you pass Storrs Road, spare a thought for the family commemorated by this name.

Three brothers went to the Great War, but only two came home, and they came to Peachester.

SOURCE: Storr family photographs and papers, Peachester Heritage Centre collection.